How do Washington school districts compare to book removal in the US

Banned Books Week It begins Sunday, kicking off an annual week-long event to celebrate reading freedom in the United States and raise awareness of the growing cause of book bans across the country. McClatchy News will publish several stories throughout the week, highlighting local and national issues surrounding book censorship in the United States.

it was there More than 1500 books of challenges and bans In the United States since September 2021 across 86 school districts in 26 states, according to a cooperative list maintained by pen americaa non-profit organization created to defend freedom of expression through literature.

This number has been rising since the beginning of 2021. American Library Association Track 729 challenges for 1,597 books in 2021, setting a record for most ALA challenges in a single year.

It’s a stark reminder of the speed and ferocity that challenges and book bans have faced in the United States in recent years, with many of the challenges focusing on books that highlight sexuality or the LGBTQ+ community.

The following list highlights the top 10 school districts in the United States that have either banned or removed books from libraries since the fall of 2021, according to PEN America.

Some regions reversed their decision to remove books due to protests but remained on the list due to bans or initial removals of books.

Top 10 school districts to remove books

  1. Central York School DistrictPennsylvania – 441

  2. Northeast Independent School DistrictTexas – 435

  3. Indian River School DistrictFL – 161

  4. Granbury Independent School DistrictTexas – 131

  5. Fredericksburg Independent School DistrictTexas – 42

  6. Bristow Public SchoolsOklahoma – 38

  7. Goddard Public SchoolsKS – 29

  8. Prosper Independent SchoolTexas – 23

  9. Brevard Public SchoolsFlorida – 20

  10. Klein Independent School DistrictTexas – 19

Central York School District tops the list, having banned 441 books focused almost entirely on titles related to people of color in School Board Meeting on November 9, 2020. The agenda refers to books as the “Diversity Resource List,” and the board voted unanimously, 9-0, to “disallow their use in the classroom.”

After the student-led protests, the school board reinstated the “diversity resource list” in A Meeting on September 20, 2021After an hour of hearing the citizens’ comments.

The Northeast Independent School District, north of San Antonio, Texas, removed more than 430 books from its shelves in December 2021, replacing them with “books on similar topics,” according to San Antonio report. County officials permanently removed 110 of these books upon further review and returned the rest of the books to library shelves.

For a book to be banned, it must first be challenged. Anyone can file a claim with The most common causes The book is “sexually explicit,” contains “offensive language,” or is “inappropriate for any age,” according to the ALA.

Although different school districts have different policies for book review, Most common steps Including examining an institution’s initial selection policy for a book, collecting resources such as book reviews and related Top of the Year highlights, and reading or re-reading the book.

The district’s board of directors will then vote to support the challenge or restore the books to their previous state.

Books Banned in Washington State

Washington State has four books in three school districts removed from its shelves since the fall of 2021 Kent School District Removal Not all boys are blue by George M. Johnson, Jack of Hearts (and other parts) by L.C. Rosen, and If I’m your girl By Meredith Russo in January 2022.

Jack of Hearts (and other parts) It was returned in a 2-1 vote by the Kent School Board in June after ACLU in Washington Threat of legal action In a message to the region.

“Banning books goes against the district’s nondiscrimination policy and harms students,” the letter said. “The fact that the only relevant book removed under the guise of protecting young people from sexual topics is a book titled LGBTQ+ is blatant discrimination and goes against the special boycott policy.”

Controversy continues over the other two books.

The Kitsap Central School District And the Walla Walla Public Schools Both are prohibited Gender: Memoirs By Maia Kobabe last year. The book is still off the shelves in both school districts.

Countries that removed books from shelves

The following list is the 26 countries tracked by PEN America that have removed books from library shelves sometime since September 2021. Some books have since been returned but counted because they were initially pulled off shelves:

  1. Texas – 713

  2. Pennsylvania – 456

  3. Florida – 204

  4. Oklahoma – 43

  5. KS – 29

  6. Indiana – 17

  7. Virginia – 15

  8. TN – 15

  9. Missouri – 14

  10. Georgia – 13

  11. New York – 12

  12. Utah – 11

  13. North Carolina – 6

  14. Wisconsin – 5

  15. Washington – 5

  16. Ohio – 4

  17. Iowa – 4

  18. Illinois – 4

  19. New Jersey – 3

  20. Michigan – 2

  21. South Carolina – 1

  22. Rhode Island – 1

  23. Minnesota – 1

  24. Maryland – 1

  25. Alaska – 1

  26. Arkansas – 1

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